About this piece:
Playing House is a non-linear narrative told through prose poetry and collage. Each of the 52 cards features a poem on its face and a collage on its back. They chronicle a man’s life and his relationships as he performs his identity against the domestic backdrop of middle America. Each collage is a non-representational meditation on its respective verse, and is created from wallpaper fragments to further reference the facade of domesticity. Playing House collects moments from the protagonist’s life as he struggles to reconcile his past – a failed marriage, complicated childhood, and the necessity of keeping up appearances – with his new life as an openly gay man in a tumultuous relationship. Through its indeterminate structure, Playing House explores memory, the influence of the past on the present, and the inadequacy of language as a means of communication. The text, imagery, structure, and reading experience are connected by common motifs like surface, simulacra, and fragmentation.
The cards are facsimiles of the original collages, digital offset printed on coated linen card stock.
This project is a collaboration with Carley Gomez, who wrote the text and executed many of the collages.
ink, card stock
About the artist:
Levi Sherman is a designer and interdisciplinary artist, currently teaching visual communication at The American Academy of Art in Chicago. He received his MFA in Interdisciplinary Book and Paper Arts at Columbia College Chicago in 2015, where he was a Print Production Fellow for the Journal of Artists’ Books and taught undergraduate bookbinding and letterpress. His BFA in Visual Communications was earned at The University of Arizona in 2012. His work is held in various collections including the Joan Flasch Artists’ Book Collection and the Forgotten Zine Archive.